The Senate yesterday queried the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) Dr. Maikanti Baru over the source of funding of the N26 differential in the pump of the price of petroleum per liter.

Daily Trust reported that Baru had while addressing newsmen last Sunday said the landing cost of the petrol has risen to N171 per liter against the N145 government approved pump price.

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream), Senator Kabir Garba Marafa (APC, Zamfara) and the spokesperson of the Senate, Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi demanded the explanation during a press briefing in Abuja yesterday.

The briefing was organized ahead of the Senate investigative hearing on the fuel scarcity scheduled to hold next Thursday. Baru, the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu and all the key players in the industry have been invited.

Marafa said since Nigerians have been told that the landing cost of petrol per liter has risen to N171 per liter, there is a need for explanation as to the source of funding of the differential. “We were told that there is a subsidy, so if there is, who approved it? We are the only ones who can appropriate money.  If you do that without our approval, you have breached the Constitution of the country.”

Marafa said between 2006 and 2016, the government spent over N10trillion on the payment of subsidy, saying it only benefitted very few persons in the country.

Also speaking, Senator Sabi expressed the dismay of the Senate on the lingering fuel scarcity in the country.

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